Press Releases 2015

March 4, 2015 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) introduced several bills targeted at improving the nation’s broken criminal justice system. “The bills I introduced today would make targeted but much needed improvements to our criminal justice system,” Scott stated. “For example, making the Fair Sentencing Act retroactive is just commonsense. There is absolutely no reason that individuals sentenced under the old crack cocaine sentencing laws should not be able to petition a court, which can conduct case-by-case determinations that it is in the interest of public safety, to grant the benefit of reductions enacted pursuant to the Fair Sentencing Act. Research has demonstrated that treating crack more severely than powder cocaine is not based upon any scientific or otherwise empirical evidence of increased dangerousness to the user or to the community. It is time Congress does away with this discriminatory disparity once and for all.
March 3, 2015 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Tomorrow, the Supreme Court will hear arguments in David King, et al v. Sylvia Burwell, Secretary of Health and Human Services, et al. The Ranking Members of the House Committees on Ways and Means, Energy and Commerce, and Education and the Workforce today reiterated their support of the affordability provisions within the Affordable Care Act, as previously noted in an Amicus Brief before the Court. Ranking Members Sander Levin (D-MI), Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ), and Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (D-VA) released the following joint statement: “Since day one, our commitment has been to provide quality and affordable health insurance for all Americans, regardless of whether a state chose to operate its own marketplace or let state residents purchase insurance in the federal marketplace. Let us be clear: the Affordable Care Act was structured and designed to improve health insurance coverage and access across the entire country
February 27, 2015 Press Release
50 Members of Congress file amicus brief challenging District Court ruling to exempt home care workers from minimum wage and overtime protections
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) and Congressman Bobby Scott (D-VA) led a bicameral group of Democratic lawmakers in filing an amicus brief opposing the District Court ruling that would maintain the outdated exclusion of home care workers from basic worker protections like minimum wage and overtime. “For too long, home care workers have been denied bedrock minimum wage and overtime protections,” said Congressman Scott. “ As this workforce grows, these workers deserve to be recognized as the professionals they are. I hope that the D.C. circuit court will overturn this misguided decision and extend Fair Labor Standards Act protections to the nearly 2 million workers who would benefit from the Department of Labor’s rule.”
February 23, 2015 Press Release
President called for stronger consumer protections against conflicted and bad retirement advice
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Robert C. "Bobby" Scott (VA-03), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, released the following statement today after President Barack Obama announced that the Department of Labor will lay out new standards to ensure retirement advisors act in the best interest of their clients when giving investment advice: "Today's announcement by the President is another critical step toward improving every American family's retirement security. Too many middle-class and working families are worried about saving enough for retirement. According to recent data, 71 percent of Americans who are not yet retired say that it is too hard keep up with their bills and also save for retirement. And more than half of American households are at risk not saving enough to maintain their current standard of living in retirement. While we need to do more to help families save for retirement, the very least we can do is safeguard the retirement investments they have already made.
February 20, 2015 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressmen Gerry Connolly (VA-11), Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-3), and Don Beyer (VA-8) today wrote Interior Secretary Sally Jewell citing their serious concerns that Virginia and neighboring states are included in the U.S. Department of the Interior’s draft five-year plan for offshore oil and gas development. The Virginia congressmen asked Jewell to reconsider the decision to include portions of the Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf in the offshore leasing program for 2017-2022. Instead, they suggested that the Interior Department “build on opportunities to expand renewable energy production, such as wind energy,” which has the potential to generate nearly as much energy as offshore drilling and create 50 percent more jobs.
February 18, 2015 Press Release
More Than 380,000 Virginians Enrolled
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) issued the following statement on the Department of Health and Human Services’ release of open enrollment data for the Health Insurance Marketplaces created by the Affordable Care Act (ACA): “The enrollment data released today shows that the Affordable Care Act is working to provide affordable health insurance to millions of Americans. During the second open enrollment period which ended on February 15th, 11.4 million consumers selected plans or were automatically re-enrolled through or state-based Marketplaces – up from the 8 million who enrolled last year. This number includes 384,612 Virginians who selected plans through the Marketplace this year. Even more Virginians could benefit from the ACA if the Virginia General Assembly voted to expand Medicaid.
February 12, 2015 Press Release
Bill would restore discretion to judges in nonviolent drug cases
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Rep. Raúl Labrador, R-Idaho, and Rep. Robert C. "Bobby" Scott, D-Va., introduced the Smarter Sentencing Act today to bring common sense and flexibility to federal criminal sentencing laws. The bill would allow courts to make individualized assessments in nonviolent drug cases, ensuring that limited resources are focused on the most serious offenders, while maintaining public safety. A companion bill has been introduced in the United States Senate by Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) and Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL). "I am honored to join Congressman Labrador as a cosponsor of the Smarter Sentencing Act," said Rep. Scott. "Granting federal judges more discretion in sentencing for nonviolent drug offenses is the right thing to do. Studies of mandatory minimums conclude that they fail to reduce crime, they waste the taxpayers’ money, they discriminate against minorities, and they often require the imposition of sentences that violate common sense.
February 12, 2015 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Yesterday, Congressman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) received the 2015 Congressional Champion Award from The Corps Network in recognition of his leadership on behalf of service, conservation, and the young men and women serving communities in Virginia and across the country. The Corps Network helps disadvantaged young people develop job and leadership skills through a variety of service projects designed to address important environment and community needs. “I am honored to be recognized by The Corps Network for my work in Congress,” said Rep. Scott. “Ensuring opportunities for disadvantaged and at-risk youth is critical to keeping them on the right track towards graduating high school and going on to college or into the workforce. I have focused my work in Congress on promoting comprehensive, evidence-based efforts to achieve this goal."
February 11, 2015 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Tim Kaine and Mark Warner along with U.S. Congressmen Rob Wittman (R-01), Bobby Scott (D-03), Gerry Connolly (D-11), and Don Beyer (D-08) reintroduced legislation to grant federal recognition to six Virginia Indian tribes. The bill, the Thomasina E. Jordan Indian Tribes of Virginia Federal Recognition Act of 2015, was introduced by Kaine and Wittman in the Senate and House, respectively. The bipartisan delegation introduced an earlier version of the bill in the 113th Congress, which was passed out of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee in April 2014. The legislation would grant federal recognition to the Chickahominy, the Eastern Chickahominy, the Upper Mattaponi, the Rappahannock, the Monacan, and the Nansemond tribes. These tribes have received official recognition from the Commonwealth of Virginia but have faced barriers preventing them from receiving federal recognition because of gaps in official records.
February 10, 2015 Press Release
WASHINGTON, DC – Representatives Jared Polis (D-CO), Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (D-VA) and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) today introduced the Student Non-Discrimination Act (SNDA), which would help protect public school students from bullying, harassment, and discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Senator Al Franken (D-MN) will be introducing the companion bill in the Senate today. “Evidence shows that discrimination against LGBT students deprives them of equal educational opportunities by increasing their likelihood of skipping school, underperforming academically, and dropping out,” said Rep. Scott, ranking Democratic member on the House Education and the Workforce Committee. “School must be a place where all students feel welcome and safe to thrive.”